Thursday, May 15, 2008
What on earth has happened to Andruw Jones? That is the question that has been haunting the Los Angeles Dodgers this season and there doesn’t seem to be a suitable answer anywhere in sight.
The Dodgers spent a ton of money on Jones and at the time I thought it might be a mistake. Joe Torre is sticking with him right now, but how long can that last?
There is going to be a point sometime during the summer when Torre realizes that it may be time to bench Jones. With four outfielders, Jones is pushing a more deserving player (Andre Ethier) to sit on the bench.
So far, the Dodgers are playing hot and cold. After winning eight straight, they lost five in a row. Right now, they sit one game above .500. An extra hot bat in the lineup might just be one of the things they need to get on another roll. And Jones surely isn’t wielding that bat, at least not currently.
What will happen to this $36 million mistake? Here is baseball writer Eric Gouldsberry’s (www.thisgreatgame.com) take on the whole Jones debacle:
Andruw Jones and the Temple of Doom
The vultures are beginning to circle around center field at Dodger Stadium, where Andruw Jones is currently trying to call home. The Dodgers knew they were taking a moderate risk on Jones, signing him to a two-year, $36 million contract despite a dreadful 2007 campaign in Atlanta where he hit just .222.
At least the power (26 homers, 94 RBIs) was there then; but right now, nothing’s there—not the average (.170 through Sunday), the slugging (one homer and just five RBIs through his first 36 games), or the clutch game (1-for-27 with runners in scoring position).
The reviews are in for Jones, and they’re not good. T.J. Simers of the Los Angeles Times: “(Jones is) a Tubbo (248 pounds) and clueless, which really isn’t a good combination for the player with the highest annual salary in Dodger history.”
Seth Livingston of USA Today: “Is it possible Jones has lost it? Temporarily? Maybe forever?” The fans at Dodger Stadium: “BOO!” And what does Jones have to say about the catcalls? “I don’t care,” he repeatedly told Simers after Friday’s game in Los Angeles, “that’s (the fans’) problem.”